East Oregonian : E.O. (Pendleton, OR) 1888-current, May 08, 2018, Page Page 3A, Image 3

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Tuesday, May 8, 2018
East Oregonian
Cinco de Mayo brings cultures together
Main Street water to be turned off
PENDLETON — As the city of Pendleton continues
the replacement project for a water main underneath
South Main Street, buildings near the intersection of
Main Street and Emigrant Avenue will have their water
service interrupted on Wednesday and Thursday.
According to a city press release, contractors are
ready to tie in the new main, which will require city
workers to shut off water from 10 p.m. Wednesday to 6
a.m. Thursday.
The release states that the city has personally
contacted affected customers and is aiming for minimal
The construction has mostly affected parking and
traffic through the 400 block of Main Street, although
the city adopted a Monday through Thursday work
schedule to mitigate impact to nearby businesses and the
Pendleton Farmers Market.
East Oregonian
Hermiston’s Cinco de
Mayo event spread across
more real estate than ever
this year as the celebration
of Mexican heritage took
over the grassy acres of the
Eastern Oregon Trade and
Event Center.
Rainstorms Saturday and
Sunday afternoons may have
kept a few people away, but
crowds were still enjoying
a mixture of carnival rides,
food booths, contests, a beer
garden and live entertain-
ment. Political candidates for
local and state offices were
also there in force to meet
and greet attendees.
Itzahiana Uriate, one of
the three Cinco de Mayo
court members, was enjoy-
ing a few tacos Saturday
afternoon before stepping
up on stage to introduce the
court and help with an eating
She said she saw her role
on the court as a representa-
tive of Latino culture in the
community, and was hon-
ored to speak at the Hermis-
ton City Council recently.
“It was mostly my mom’s
idea because she thought, I
don’t know, that I was capa-
ble, and then I got excited
about the thought of it,” she
People sometimes incor-
rectly refer to Cinco de Mayo
as “Mexican independence
day,” but Uriate explained
the celebration marks the day
that Mexico defeated a larger
and more well-equipped
army in the Battle of Puebla.
Bobbi Conner joins Oregon
Community Foundation board
Staff photo by Jade McDowell
The Cinco de Mayo court poses for a photo during Hermiston’s Cinco de Mayo
celebration Saturday.
Uriate said winning the bat-
tle was a “great victory” to
celebrate as a way for Mex-
ican-Americans to recognize
their Mexican heritage and
Jessica Rodriguez, who
was visiting the celebration
from Pasco with Ricky Chi-
cas, also alluded to Cinco
de Mayo as a celebration of
“It just brings back mem-
ories of the culture, and we
can interact with people who
came from the same area as
us,” she said.
Part of that cultural cel-
ebration, of course, is also
the traditional food, she said
as she started in on a plate
of authentic tacos from her
parents’ food stand set up at
Rodriguez and Chicas
said they were impressed
with Saturday’s event, and
Chicas said he was look-
ing forward to the live bands
starting later.
Alejandra Aviles, who
was watching some of the
contests going on Saturday
afternoon, said she was also
looking forward to the bands.
She said she comes to Herm-
iston’s Cinco de Mayo cele-
bration every year in antici-
pation of the music.
Before the bands came on,
a series of contests were held
on the stage. The first was an
eating contest, which chal-
lenged a table full of children
to eat six Gansitos, a choco-
late-covered cake with cream
and berry filling.
The winner of the day
(and the La Palma gift certif-
icate) was Edwin Velasco, 9.
“I feel great, and I say
thank you to the other kids
who worked hard to win too,”
he said after his big win.
Before the contests began,
the national anthem of Mex-
ico and the national anthem
of the United States of Amer-
ica were both sung, and city
councilor Clara Beas Fitz-
gerald thanked everyone for
coming and the sponsors of
the event, which was in a
new location this year after
outgrowing downtown and
Butte Park.
“Every year it is bigger
and more beautiful,” she said
in Spanish.
be working from 9 a.m. to
noon on May 19, starting
at Stillman Park (413 S.E.
Byers Ave. in Pendleton) and
working outward, ending
with a barbecue lunch at the
park. Participants are asked
to RSVP on Facebook if pos-
sible to help organizers get a
count of how many gloves,
bags and lunches are needed.
Contact Jade McDowell
at jmcdowell@eastorego-
nian.com or 541-564-4536.
East Oregonian
PENDLETON — Bobbie Conner has joined the
board of the Oregon Community Foundation.
Connor, director of the Tamástslikt Cultural Institute,
is one of three new members along with Romy
Mortenson of Bend and Peter Nickerson of Portland.
Before moving to Pendleton,
Conner worked for the U.S. Small
Business Administration and at
an Indian nonprofit in Seattle,
according to a news release from the
foundation. She is enrolled at the
Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla
Indian Reservation and is a graduate
of Pendleton High School, the
University of Oregon and Willamette
University. She is also the vice
Bobbi Conner
chair of the board of trustees for
Eastern Oregon University, and has
co-authored multiple books and other published works
including the tribal history book “As Days Go By.”
The Oregon Community Foundation works with
Oregonians to create charitable funds to support
community causes such as fighting childhood poverty.
The foundation awarded more than $118 million in
grants and scholarships in 2017.
“OCF is enthusiastic about these three engaged
and passionate community leaders joining the board
of directors,” OCF President and CEO Max Williams
said in a statement. “We value their commitments to
the communities they work and live in and know they
will help us with OCF’s important work to promote
philanthropy and serve communities around the state.”
Umatilla County Sheriff’s Office
wins award for DUII enforcement
Work party spruces up Pioneer Park
Pioneer Park in Pend-
leton is looking shiny and
new after a group of volun-
teers gave it some love on
The work party, spon-
sored by the parks and rec-
reation department, included
new paint on the playground,
bandstand, fence and signs
as well as new bark chips
and other small projects.
Kyndra Nelson, who was
busy painting the front of the
cement bandstand Saturday
morning, said she was there
because she felt that helping
out was a good use of her
“I just like to volunteer.
It’s fun,” she said.
Kaci Grayber, a Pend-
leton High School stu-
dent, was carefully repaint-
ing slats on the playground
fence nearby. She said the
project would help her get
needed service hours for
National Honor Society, but
she also just wanted to help
“I remember going to this
park as a kid, so it’s kind of
cool to come out here and
make it look nice,” she said.
She complimented the
adults out painting and rak-
ing despite not necessar-
ily using the wooden, cas-
Page 3A
PENDLETON — The Umatilla County Sheriff’s
Office won the 2017 Oregon enforcement agency of the
year award from the Oregon DUII multi-disciplinary
training task force.
The sheriff’s office in a written statement reported
deputies last year made more than 100 arrests for driving
under the influence of intoxicants, and some of the arrests
led to major drug seizures and solved other criminal cases.
Sheriff Terry Rowan and his team received the award
Thursday at the task force’s conference in Bend.
“DUII enforcement is very important to us because
it directly affects the safety and well-being of our
citizens,” according to a written statement from the
sheriff’s office. “Our deputies are trained in the detection
and investigation of DUII, and we have two drug
recognition experts on staff.”
Staff photo by Jade McDowell
Kyndra Nelson, bottom left, Cathy Shermer and Domu-
nik Hull paint the stairs of the bandstand at Pioneer Park
in Pendleton during a volunteer work party Saturday.
tle-like playground much
The wooden playground
structure at 400 N.W.
Despain Avenue was rebuilt
in 2013 after an arsonist
burned it down.
Pendleton residents who
missed out on the commu-
nity service project will have
another opportunity to help
spruce up their community
on May 19 with the SURE
Spring River Cleanup.
SURE — which stands
for Stewards of the Uma-
tilla River Environment —
is a group of citizens with
a goal of keeping the river-
way clean. Volunteers will
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Pendleton, OR I-84 - Exit 216
What are observers saying about what
Commissioner Murdock has brought to Umatilla
County in his first full term?
On the subject of energy & commitment:
“He models what he expects from employees -
he’s among those who open the Courthouse in
the morning and among those who close it in
the evening - every day.”
On the subject of accessibility:
“When I drop by the Commissioner’s office,
I can count on Commissioner Murdock
being there.”
On the subject of knowledge & experience:
“It’s not easy helping lead 300 employees and
balancing an $80 million budget.
Commissioner Murdock came to the position
with decades of experience and it shows in the
current state of the county.”
On the subject of past performance:
“Commissioner Murdock made a positive
difference at the Intermountain ESD, the Pasco
School District and at the East Oregonian. It
shouldn’t be a surprise that Umatilla County has
benefitted from this experience.”
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Current Umatilla County Commission Board Chair
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